Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
Title: Voluntary community service in medical school: A qualitative study on student leaders’ motivations, experiences, and outcomes
Creators: Alvona Zi Hui Loh
Julia Shi Yu Tan
Lee Jen-Mai, Jeannette 
Koh Choon Huat, Gerald 
Subject: Voluntary community service (local, overseas)
Medical school
Global Health
DOI: doi:10.6084/m9.figshare.3120637

Background: Participation in community service within underprivileged communities among medical students is associated with numerous positive outcomes, such as promoting empathy, enhancing leadership qualities, and fostering civic and social responsibility. We conducted a qualitative study to understand the experiences, motivations and student-reported outcomes on personal growth, when medical students in a developed Asian country participate in local and overseas community services.

Methods: We recruited medical students from Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine (YLLSOM), National University of Singapore, who were leaders of a community service project organized in medical school. Twelve one-to-one interviews were held for the participants from 6 to 8 January 2013. Interviews were audio-recorded and transcribed into free-flow text. Thematic analysis was performed independently by three researchers.

Results: Motivations to participate in community service include past-positive community service experience and present motivations such as compassion, self-discovery etc. Students reported higher empathy levels, improved communication, organization, decision-making, interpersonal, and leadership skills. The degree of influence on academic work and residency choice were varied.

Conclusion: Community service in medical school enriches medical students by bringing about improved self-reported outcomes, leadership skills, and interpersonal skills. It has some bearing on residency choice and academic work.

Related Publications: 10635/141435
Citation: When using this data, please cite the original publication and also the dataset.
  • Loh AZH, Tan JSY, Lee JJ-M, Koh GC-H. Voluntary community service in medical school: a qualitative study on obstacles faced by student leaders and potential solutions. Global Health Action. 2015;8:10.3402/gha.v8.27562. doi:10.3402/gha.v8.27562.
  • Alvona Zi Hui Loh, Julia Shi Yu Tan, Lee Jen-Mai, Jeannette, Koh Choon Huat, Gerald (2016-03-22). Voluntary community service in medical school: A qualitative study on student leaders’ motivations, experiences, and outcomes. ScholarBank@NUS Repository. [Dataset].
License: Attribution 4.0 International
Appears in Collections:Staff Dataset

Show full item record
Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormatAccess Settings 
imte_a_1150985_sm8194.docx35.35 kBMicrosoft Word XML



Google ScholarTM



This item is licensed under a Creative Commons License Creative Commons